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05-29-2016, 11:29 AM - 1 Like   #1
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Stinky seller

First let me say that I am not a seasoned fleabay buyer, having only a couple dozen purchases and no sales there. I like to look around mostly and buy the occasional accessory or sometimes take a chance on something extremely cheap that might turn out to be a great buy. This morning I saw a very old M42 lens that I hadn't seen before with 0 bids and very cheap starting price of $100. Hmmmm, I thought, why is the S&H close to $90? As I thought about bidding (before realizing it is an item normally selling for over $1000) I decided to ask why the S&H is so high.

In the reply the guy insulted me by saying that if I was concerned about the S&H I couldn't possibly afford his lens. I replied something about a certain new Pentax body that I had on order and he replied that it wouldn't work on that body. *sigh* More insults followed. He mentioned that it was a collector's lens, never meant to actually be used hence the two thousand dollar reserve price.

The bottom line is that he seems to be a greedy, snotty a-hole who isn't a photog, someone from whom I won't be purchasing a thing. PM me if you'd like to know his name.

Cheers.

P.S. If I've broken forum etiquette I'll delete this. I'm pretty steamed or I wouldn't have posted this.

05-29-2016, 12:00 PM - 2 Likes   #2
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Just be glad that you have not compounded your problems by actually buying from someone like that. If that is what the seller is like when seeking your money, what will they be like after they have it.
05-29-2016, 12:10 PM   #3
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Yes, I am glad about that, and venting has helped.
05-29-2016, 01:22 PM   #4
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This is against eBay policy to have outrageous shipping charges. The trick is used to avoid final value fees. If you're not familiar, eBay charges you a percentage based on the final sale price. But shipping isn't (or wasn't) included. What sellers would do is put a TV up for $20 and charge $1800 to ship it, thus avoiding the 10% eBay would charge them. In less egregious cases, sellers would charge much higher than actual shipping fees in attempt to recover their fees; if an item cost $5 in actual postage they would charge $10 to make back that 10% final value and 3% Paypal fee. This is also against policy since it has been disllowed to charge extra for Paypal payments on eBay since 2002 or something like that.

With automatically calculated shipping based on weights for many items, this practice has come to an end, but as you see, it can still happen. This guy is figuring someone will underbid by $100 so he'll get out of some fee.

05-29-2016, 01:27 PM   #5
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Ebay changed that rule years ago. A seller now pays 10% on the total of the item purchased and the shipping amount charged by the seller. This is why many sellers (like myself) offer free shipping.
05-29-2016, 01:29 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by MadMathMind Quote
This is against eBay policy to have outrageous shipping charges. The trick is used to avoid final value fees. If you're not familiar, eBay charges you a percentage based on the final sale price. But shipping isn't (or wasn't) included. What sellers would do is put a TV up for $20 and charge $1800 to ship it, thus avoiding the 10% eBay would charge them. In less egregious cases, sellers would charge much higher than actual shipping fees in attempt to recover their fees; if an item cost $5 in actual postage they would charge $10 to make back that 10% final value and 3% Paypal fee. This is also against policy since it has been disllowed to charge extra for Paypal payments on eBay since 2002 or something like that.

With automatically calculated shipping based on weights for many items, this practice has come to an end, but as you see, it can still happen. This guy is figuring someone will underbid by $100 so he'll get out of some fee.
I didn't know that was a thing on ebay though I've suspected the same for some marketplace items on Amazon. Since I've never shipped anything close to the value of that lens, much less his reserve price (supposedly $2000) I don't know what insurance costs. I did a quick check for UPS and USPS insurance costs but didn't find anything useful.
05-29-2016, 01:36 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by TomTom Quote
I didn't know that was a thing on ebay though I've suspected the same for some marketplace items on Amazon. Since I've never shipped anything close to the value of that lens, much less his reserve price (supposedly $2000) I don't know what insurance costs. I did a quick check for UPS and USPS insurance costs but didn't find anything useful.
Amazon is even more strict because the item has to be in the database, which means they know its weight for their own purposes. Plus, the shipping credits are standard on many items, such as DVDs, books, etc. I've always thought books were a bit unfair on that because some books are a lot heavier...a paperback novel and a calculus textbook get the same shipping fee yet one weighs a few ounces and the other weighs pounds.
05-29-2016, 01:46 PM   #8
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Yep, if he is really selling it for $2k or more, then shipping+insurance will approach $100 (or more if overseas). So there is nothing sketchy there per se. As far as the guy just being an a-hole...well, the world's full of them. Most people are a-holes...

05-29-2016, 01:48 PM   #9
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Without seeing the auction, I can be pretty certain that this lens was not a collectors item and the seller didn't have a clue about camera gear.


I ran into a seller not quite like the guy you did, but was just as bad. Another hobby I have is building scale models. About 10 years ago, that hobby branched into scale figurines made out of resin. I came across this seller that had a long list of these figures up for sale starting around $200 and going up from there. He stated in the auction that these models were "rare". I started to look down through his list and I noticed some of the stock numbers looked like some I had seen before on a website.


I went and checked that website, and sure enough, this guy was trying to sell recast models for 3 to 5 times what the original re-caster was selling them for. What made it funny was the re-caster had the same models this guy was selling at $200 for sale and in stock for $35. I told him about this and what he was trying to sell but all he did was just ignore what I told him.


I feel sorry for the people that buy from sellers like that.
05-29-2016, 02:06 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Yep, if he is really selling it for $2k or more, then shipping+insurance will approach $100 (or more if overseas). So there is nothing sketchy there per se. As far as the guy just being an a-hole...well, the world's full of them. Most people are a-holes...
Overseas, yeah, but domestically, unless it's Next Day Air, UPS Ground with full $2k declaration is about $35 from NYC to LA.

Only if you put it through the post office (!) will it get to be that much. And postal insurance is worthless so I'd never put anything so valuable through USPS.
05-29-2016, 02:41 PM   #11
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Thank you all for the comments and facts about Ebay and Amazon.

This is the lens model.
05-29-2016, 03:23 PM - 1 Like   #12
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I am aware of the costs involved in shipping and what is fair and reasonable.
I make it a point to steer clear of sellers for whom shipping is a profit center.

Chris
05-29-2016, 03:57 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
I am aware of the costs involved in shipping and what is fair and reasonable.
I make it a point to steer clear of sellers for whom shipping is a profit center.
But since the seller is charged exactly the same (from ebay) for shipping as for "the price", it makes no sense to even make a distinction (as a buyer) of what is/is not "shipping cost". The seller gains nothing from it whether he charges a lot for shipping or not -- it is just part of the total price with a different label on it. Now, there probably is some psychological/marketing component to it wherein bidders don't pay enough attention to the shipping cost when bidding so aren't giving it its full weight, but for an expensive collector's item you have to assume the potential buyers aren't total nitwits.

Anyway, bottom line is that since ebay implemented this policy (which after all does screw over honest sellers by giving ebay money for a service they don't provide) the shipping cost has no meaning in particular other than to set a price minimum, and it is not appropriate to make moral judgements of the buyer about the price point when he gains nothing whether it is high or low. Buyers almost universally undervalue the true shipping costs anyway, thinking only in terms of postage...
05-29-2016, 05:07 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
That is a very rare lens. $2000 is rather high for a reserve price, but $1250-1500 is not out of the question.

If this is the listing, then the guy certainly comes off as a jackass in his listing, and it looks like he is actually bragging about being a jerk to you:

"I AM LOOKING TO SELL THIS ITEM TO ANOTHER COLLECTOR, NOT SOME BOZO WHO PICKED UP A CAMERA ONE DAY AND NOW THINK'S HE'S A PHOTOGRAPHER AND WANTS THIS LENS FOR DAILY USE. (I'VE COMMUNICATED WITH A FEW OF YOU OUT HERE)
Not even two days out and Tommy from Texas already inquired about acquiring this lens to use on his new Pentax K-1 digital."

Of course, to days out with zero bids on an item worth a grand and a half doesn't bode too well for him, so maybe he is reaping what he sowed.
Wow, he's quite a piece of...work.
05-29-2016, 06:18 PM   #15
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Not the first time that guy acts like that. He also said that he has two gold spotmatics. to me they just look like black versions + sandpaper
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